Experiences have shown that most Somali meetings end up in failure for the simple reason of putting the cart before the horse – they address the elephant in the room first, before they deliberate on and agree upon the principles and setup of a system under which they would operate.

What is that elephant in the room? It is leadership. For successful talks, leadership should be treated as blank spaces to fill in at conclusion. Starting with a leadership contest is a recipe for collapse of the meeting, based on Somali experience – any conference that started with leadership competition had failed. Formation of Federal Member States didn’t start with leadership rivalry – this came up much later in the deliberations.

Enter the National Consultative Summit now taking place at Mogadishu Afysione. Some observers are already worried. They see jockeying for power is now underway. This is on the top of the issues in the electoral impasse begging for quick resolutions. However, fierce campaigns for presidential aspiration are overshadowing the objectives of the Summit – bridging the gaps in the electoral process.

Prime Minister Roble was enjoying a modicum of unity from Hawiye Presidential Candidates until now, for the fear that their disunity helps Farmajo’s chances. But, Farmajo knows full well that Hawiye unity is fake, and he is working day and night to sow seeds of doubt and disarray in the ranks and file of Hawiye Co. Farmajo’s proxies like Qoor Qoor are already busy blasting clannish bombshells within Hawiye in a series of highly loaded tribal dinners and meetings, on the sideline in Mogadishu. These tribally charged meetings by Sacad politicians would act as harbinger for what is coming up in retaliation by other sub-clans of Habargidir, to be followed by similar fragmentations of Mudullood Hawiye. These are bad omens for the electoral process.

One thing is sure, however, collapse of this Summit isn’t an option. No matter how going gets taugh, Somalis and international community wouldn’t allow this to happen this time around. There is no room for failure. The sticking issues in the electoral process should be resolved quickly and in this session.

Stay tuned for more comments and critical analysis.
In the meantime, have your say.

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